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Sierra Nevada Pale Ale - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Sierra Nevada Pale AleSierra Nevada Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

8,696 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8,696
Reviews: 2,690
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 11.63%
Wants: 129
Gots: 896 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Generous quantities of premium Cascade hops give the Pale Ale its fragrant bouquet and spicy flavor.

37 IBU

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 07-05-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 8,696 | Reviews: 2,690 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jerskine
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%

A: nice golden color with thick foam and lots of lacing

S: the aroma of this beer wasn't anything special, but I wasn't expecting much for a pale ale that uses the basic ingredients

T: this beer claims to use the finest malted barley and hops to give it its crisp light hoppy flavor; it definitely proves its claim when the beer hits your taste buds

M: not sure if their "fresh seal cap" had anything to do with this, but the carbonation and freshness of this beer was excellent

O: Sierra Nevada is one of my go to beers when I'm not looking to spend too much. This beer doesn't try to be something it isn't... make sure to look at the date if you're buying a 12 or 24 pack; the fresher the better

jerskine, Apr 16, 2011
Photo of beerorRIP
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%

on tap at the office: in a standard pint glass, there is about a finger of head soapy on it, that does fade away over time. a bit of lace sticks around here and there. the body is a nice and clear light amber or orange color.

smells like some floral hops going on in there, but nothing out of control. fairly light in this department, but this isn't an IPA or some such creation, just a pale ale.

a nice dry taste. starts a bit malt sweetness, and transitions to hop flavor and bitterness. floral and citrus in the hop flavors.

a light to medium body for this one, and the carbonation isn't prickly or too low.

a session beer for certain. dangerously easy to drink, and flavorful enough that you'd want more without thinking it's too 'heavy' or 'filling'.

beerorRIP, Jun 04, 2009
Photo of dherling
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%

Straw pale color, nice forthy white head. Has an herbal, yeasty nose, some slight hop bitterness. Tastes herbal and yeasty, bellied by a nice hop bitterness. Has an overall earthy flavor with some nice malt flavor as well. The finish is mainly fresh ops bitterness. Has a dry, refreshing crisp mouth feel. Totally drinkable, and is, for better or worse, what I think of when I think IPA.

dherling, Oct 21, 2006
Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%

A - A gold/amber color with a one finger head that lingers for a bit. Visible carbonation. Nice rings of lace on the glass.

S - Strong cascade pine hop aroma. Slight malt character in the nose. A very very slight stomach acid scent, but not nearly potent enough to offset the positives.

T -Powerful pine flavor with slight metallic notes. A slight barley character, it is overshadowed by the moderate bitter finish. Malt stands out more as beer approaches room temp.

M - Thin and refreshing. Fairly smooth. Nothing impressive.

D - Sierra Nevada Pale Ale is easy to drink, pairs well with most foods and works fabulously as a session beer.

mrasskicktastic, Sep 15, 2005
Photo of Wrinker712
3.96/5  rDev -2%

Wrinker712, Aug 16, 2014
Photo of flyingPharmacist
3.96/5  rDev -2%

flyingPharmacist, Aug 15, 2014
Photo of Maninthearena
3.96/5  rDev -2%

Appearance- Golden straw, crisp carbonation with a head that lasted a minute or two before settling down. A little bit of yeast settled eventually.

Nose- Herbal, grainy, some spiciness, and very fresh smelling. Like something was just harvested.

Taste- Deep earthy hops with some pepper in the beginning, almost grassy with some baked-goods notes of grain. Pretty dry finish. Extremely full flavored pale ale that doesn't hide behind anything sweet like some other brews. Hints of citrus characteristic of pale ales sneaks in once warmed a little. Clean yeast.

Mouthfeel-Pretty dry, very dense carbonation left me pretty filled up. Medium thickness that thinned with the finish, very zippy.

Overall- The sum of the parts come together to make a wonderful full APA. Hearkens to sitting on the porch of a farmhouse after dinner. Extremely clean beer.

Maninthearena, Jul 09, 2013
Photo of Colin32
3.96/5  rDev -2%

Colin32, Today at 07:37 PM
Photo of JJKBeerLvr
3.96/5  rDev -2%

Poured from a bottle into pint glass.

Appearance: Bright amber, with nice thick and light colored head. The head lasted a very long time, and left a nice coating on the inside of the glass.

Smell: Pleasant, with a nice hops bitterness in the aroma. There is some sweet aromas, but the hops definitely dominate.

Taste: A nice mix of hops and malt flavors, that make for an interesting and complex Pale Ale. There is a nice after-taste, and the hops flavor lasts for a while but not too long.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and crisp, with a medium body.

Overall: I was interested in trying this classic after hearing so much about it. This is an interesting and complex Pale Ale that I would like to drink again.

JJKBeerLvr, Feb 11, 2014
Photo of adamhand
3.96/5  rDev -2%

adamhand, Apr 11, 2012
Photo of schuim
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

This orange colored beer has a nice head with a fine lace of foam. the aroma of the beer is hoppy with some pine aromas. There are some small particels in the beer.
The taste is very fruity bitter of grapefruit combined with malt. The bitterness goes into a more hoppy bitterness in the afterness.
A very nice drinkable beer.

schuim, Apr 05, 2009
Photo of cjgator3
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Pours a murky coppery amber color with a white lace that clings well onto the glass. Aroma is dominated by citrusy hops that give way to a slight maltiness and a bit of a metallic smell in the nose as well. Smooth bodied and a pretty simple straight forward beer (which is not a bad thing). Not overly hopped but a good amount. Overall, this is a good classic beer that is slightly better on-tap.

cjgator3, Sep 26, 2006
Photo of Mavajo
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Tried this beer once before and was very disappointed. Decided to try it again just to see if I'd gotten an old bottle. I'm glad I did - this sample was much more enjoyable.

Pours a nice orange color with not a whole lot of head - dissipates almost immediately. Smell is of citrusy hops. Taste is similar. The citrus and cascade hops are really noticeable, but it's not really bitter. There's a slight hint of spice here. Quite drinkable, especially if you're a fan of the style.

Mavajo, Oct 07, 2009
Photo of gotweid
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Poured from a bottle a nice golden amber type color. Head was small but the lacing clung to the glass all the way down. Fairly attractive beer. Aroma is very spicy, high on citrus and hops. Notice some grains in the aroma as well. Taste is dominated by citrus with a nice hop bitterness and malt balance. I taste grapefruit. It is good grapefruit though, not the pucker your mouth grapefruit. Mothfeel is medium bodied, slightly bitter, somewhat refreshing and actually very smooth and easy. Very drinkable. I found myself thinking this beer was ok at the beginning to thinking it was really, really good by the time I finished the bottle. I really enjoyed this. Time for another...

gotweid, Feb 28, 2009
Photo of KOPBeerDrinker
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Pours clear and golden with foamy head about 1/2" which quickly dissipates leaving lacing on the glass. Smells of citrusy hops and toasty malt. Medium body with good mouthfeel and carbonation. This is one of my favorite beers-easy to drink with good balance of hops and malt and available at most all bars/distributors in the area.

KOPBeerDrinker, Mar 05, 2007
Photo of teron_reed
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

This is my go to beer. I have six of them in my frig right now and will hopefully always. It has a mild flavor, not too overpowering and is perfect for any occasion. I prefer this beer in a bottle over tap or can.

This is my first review and will most likely be edited later.

teron_reed, Aug 31, 2013
Photo of bgjohnston
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

This beer was a light amber color with a small white head and just a small amount of carbonation. Smell was faintly of pine wood with some citrus.

Taste had a small hoppy bite to it, but was much milder than their Celebration ale. There was also a mild sweetness that balanced it. I found it to be clean and refreshing, and paired well with pizza. I could drink more than one of these and be happy.

bgjohnston, Jan 30, 2009
Photo of EgadBananas
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Pours a golden brown/copper with a full fluffy egg shell colored head on top.

The smell, like most pales, aren't hugely aromatic in my opinion. A n even layering of slight hoppiness, malts and very mild sweetness.

The taste is great. Slight citrus, with pronounced floral hops with a subtle malt finish thats very clean. Refreshing with no lacking in depth.

Crisp with a bit of a lean towards medium bodied. I don't think you coud ask for more in a pale.

This is a great pale ale and despite being a top tier brew, I can find this in amongst even the crappiest of bars and I go to town!

EgadBananas, Apr 14, 2010
Photo of Antilochus
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

On tap at the White Horse in Parsons Green. Served in a branded, Eurostamped SNPA pint glass. Nice! Cost 4 quid though.

Orangey-golden body, nice consistent white head. Leaves a bit of lace. Nothing spectacular here but lives up to expectations.

Tangerine, orange peel, malt backbone, a bit of rust and some pine sneaking in there as well. Quite good. West coast-lite.

Palate is well balanced for a hoppy APA, well-rounded with plenty of malt presence and reasonably fresh hop character. Pine really comes through, solid bitterness makes this a very drinkable and classic APA. Reminds me a lot of St. Ambroise Pale from McAuslan.


Antilochus, Aug 01, 2008
Photo of drop6301
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Appearance: Two-fingers of white head. Clear orange color with good lacing. Looks very nice.

Smell: I picked up orange-citrus notes mingling almost evenly with the malt-biscuit aroma with no overwhelming effect.

Taste: Again the biscuit and citrus-orange comes through. Very clean. The bitterness builds up slowly and then diminishes almost completely.

Mouthfeel: Medium-body, easy drinking with a dry finish. Carbonation good in the upper-medium range.

Overall: Style-wise this beer is obviously spot-on since it is listed as an example. I find it very drinkable. I've come to like pale ales that have hop character winning out over the malt.

drop6301, Dec 01, 2013
Photo of Absumaster
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

This beer seems to be a classic...

It pours an orange, dark yellow color with not much head.

Smell is hoppy and malty, with some fruit notes. Hops are really
citrus, like lemon and lime. These are the typical american hop smells.

Taste is hoppy with distinct citrus notes and exotic fruits, a little sharp. Bitterness is a little much at first but I get used to it. A good malt backbone is supporting the bitterness, which do not balance the beer, but make a good effort. Carbonation is sizzling on my tongue. Mouthfeel is OK and drinkability is assured.

Absumaster, Sep 08, 2006
Photo of LarryV
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Poured a pale amber color with a 1/2" head. Smell is citrusy hops.
Taste is citrusy hops followed by a hint of sourness. Malt just barely balances out the hoppiness. One of the hoppier pale ales on the market, and a decent session brew. Nothing really special about it, just a good, solidly brewed beer.

LarryV, May 01, 2006
Photo of ppoitras
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

Enjoyed on tap at The Pub, Amherst, MA.

16oz pint glass presentation. Hardly a head, but what was present was a white film over a dark amber brew, with no lacing. Light pale malt aroma coupled with a bit of hops, with the flavor carrying on where the nose left off, and an overall acceptable feel. Mouthfeel and drinkability excellent.

ppoitras, Aug 07, 2004
Photo of Saunapoika
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

A: Nice, dark, golden, clear appearance with initially, a 1-1/2 finger quickly receding head. Lacing continues throughout the experience.

S: Fruity, hoppy, clean smelling with just the slightest hint of maltiness.

T: Sweet up front, turning into a floral bouquet in the middle and a sharp, hoppy, dry, bitter finish. Very nicely done. The smell is very deceiving as far as the taste goes. Much more taste than the smell can deliver.

M: For me, a bit overcarbonated. A slight too much stinging in the experience for me. Had I let it sit for awhile, I think I would have been happier with it. Not bad though...

D: Not too shabby. I think with a bit less carbonation, the smoothness would temp me to quaff down a couple more of these things. I have really enjoyed the SN Pale Ale for a while now and have finally had the chance to rate it. Nice job. A great beer to try and clone as far as homebrewing goes.

Saunapoika, Mar 07, 2008
Photo of crossovert
3.98/5  rDev -1.5%

12 ounce bottle from the local grocery store, this seems to be one of the most widespread crafts around here along with Sam Adams, New Glarus, and Hacker-Pschorr. Elegantly decorated bottle.

Pours into my pint glass with a small white head and no lacing. Its a nice amber in color, sorta bloody piss like color. I wish bloody piss didn't look like this because it's a nice looking beer, with some bubbles continuously floating to the top.

Smell is a bit pedestrian, has some floral citrus hop. A little bit of sweet malt too.

Taste has a nice hoppy bite to it, but not without some sweeter, bready malt. Has a creamier mouthfeel, not enough carbonation though. Its decently balanced.

Overall this is a great lawnmower or party beer, its got a nice kicky abv but not too much to ruin a good session. Not on par with say Alpha King though.

crossovert, Aug 24, 2009
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 8,696 ratings.